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Name: DELAMERE, Diana, Lady

image of individualimage of individual

Nee: Caldwell, then Mrs Motion, Lady Delves Broughton, Mrs Colvile

Birth Date: 23 Dec 1913 Steyning

Death Date: 3 Sep 1987 Bracknell, Berkshire

First Date: 1940

Married: 1. In Chelsea 27 Oct 1937 Vernon Motion (18 Nov 1904-10 May 1980 Petersfield); 2. In Durban 5 Nov 1940 Sir Henry John Delves Broughton (1883-1942); 3. In Kenya 1943 Gilbert de Préville Colvile (div. 1955) (1887-1966); 4. In Kenya 26 Mar 1955 Thomas Pitt Hamilton Cholmondeley, 3rd Baron Delamere (1900-1979)

Children: son died in infancy; Sarah 'Snoo' (adopted)

Book Reference: Best, Mischief, mini-SITREP XII, Ghosts

General Information:

Mischief - When Broughton met Diana in 1935 she was 22 - although not a classic beauty, she was very striking, with her pale blue eyes and mass of blonde hair; her way of radiating enjoyment and the quickness of her smile had touched offmany an infatuation. ........ Cyril Connolly wrote - 'one of those creamy ash blondes of the period with a passion for clothes and jewels, both worn to perfection, and for enjoying herself and bringing out enjoyment in others. Her large pale eyes would be called cold by those on whom they had not smiled, her mouth hard by those who had not kissed it.' ...... She danced in London, hunted in Warwickshire, flew her own plane to Le Touquet, Vienna and Budapest. Her father, Seymour Caldwell ...... had been a gambler and little else since leaving Eton. ....... Diana had been briefly married to a playboy musician called Vernon Motion, who played second piano to Carroll Gibbons and his Savoy Orpheans ....... She divorced him for adultery soon after the marriage ..... in London she ran a cocktail club with her friend Betty Somerset, called the Blue Goose, in Bruton Mews, near Bond Street ..... she was often photographed in the company of a handsome young lieutenant called Hugh Dickinson - he was never far away from Diana and he was a frequent guest at Doddington. ........ Diana was roughly the same age as Broughton's children, and, as the relationship developed it led to increasing difficulties with them and with Vera [Broughton's wife]. ........ In 1938 Broughton made a final public appearance with Vera at the marriage of their daughter Rosamund to Lord Lovat ........ Cockie Hoogterp - then the Baroness Blixen (Bror Blixen's second wife after Isak Dinesen) met the couple in Johannesburg. She wrote to Lord Francis Scott and told him she thought Diana was 'an extremely glamorous girl, with a heart of steel and that she was a 'gold digger'. ....... Diana married Broughton in Durban register office on 5/11/1940 ......... at 'Boy' and Paula Long's house Diana said 'I'm not sharing a room with that dirty old man.' [Delves-Broughton]. They never did share a room. ........... After the Erroll murder Superintendent Poppy found Diana hard and haughty, and acqisitive. ............ Miss Wilkes - Broughton and Diana's maid commented - 'Diana had those special kind of lips. Sensual lips. And those eyes! And her skin! The sun never touched it. I saw her in the bath once, stretched out with £90,000 worth of pearls round her neck. I asked if I should take them off, but she just laughed and said "Leave them be Wilkie". Oh, she had a figure on her. And couldn't she ride! She was just like one with the horse.' ........... there is a scurrilous legend current around Lake Naivasha that Diana asked Broughton's partner, John Hopcraft, with a view to her next conquest, "Who is the richest man in Kenya?" ............ she married Colvile in Jan 1943, a month after Broughton's suicide ....... (more) ............ Diana lost 2 children - the first lived for 10 days, the second was stillborn. Diana and Colvile adopted a daughter, Sarah, known as 'Snoo'. .............. then Diana fell in love with Tom Delamere, a good friend of Colvile's ........... Colvile agreed, in 1955 to an amicable divorce and Hon Mary Delamere sued her husband for divorce, citing Diana ....... Diana married Tom. ........... When Colvile died he left everything to Diana. The most conservative estimate of the proceeds of Diana's sale of Colvile's property, to raise death duties, was £2.5 million. ......... Diana buried Tom Delamere in the little walled cemetery she built on Colvile's farm at 'Ndabibi' (the Masai word for 'place of clover') alongside Colvile and her only child, who had lived for 10 days.
mini-SITREP XII - Article on Delameres - anon? ..... still lives on the 50,000 acre farm his grandfathyer acquired at the turn of the century. ....... The ghost of Diana still haunts Soysambu, the family farm on Lake Elmenteita. Beyond the veranda, in a blaze of bougainvillea, is the swimming pool. 'It's heated' explained Lord Delamere. 'I can't stand cold swimming pools. When Diana lived here she never bothered with swimming so it was unheated. She just lay around with her pearls on and always said to me, "Hughie dear, won't you go swimming?" and it was 50 degrees. As soon as she died I had the heating installed. And the wall built. She said the wall would have spoilt the view." There are still wardrobes in the house full of Diana's clothes from Chanel, Givenchy and Yves St Laurent. Her jewels remain too: large diamond rings and pearls the size of pebbles. But he does not share the regard that others felt for her. 'Of course she was the best whore in the country for 50 years. She was a trisexual. What's a trisexual? I thought everybody knew; she liked men; she would jump into bed with any woman that would have her; and she had a boyish body and liked seducing gays who would then enjoy her. There, now you know as much as I do."

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